The use of LEED Green Building Rating System™ - A case study of Gröna Skrapan in Gothenburg

Examensarbete för masterexamen

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Type: Examensarbete för masterexamen
Master Thesis
Title: The use of LEED Green Building Rating System™ - A case study of Gröna Skrapan in Gothenburg
Authors: Lanau, Maud
Abstract: The construction industry’s extensive use of materials increases the pressure on the Earth resources. It is of capital importance to address such environmental impacts and to design and construct green buildings: buildings that are more respectful of the environment. Many companies wishing to develop such green building use environmental certifications. LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System is one of the most famous of these environmental certification schemes. Although developed in and for the United States, LEED is being used in Sweden. The goal of this study is to analyse the usefulness and pertinence of using this US-based certification system when it comes to the development of green buildings in Sweden. The whole study has been based on the case of the high rise office building Gröna Skrapan in Gothenburg, constructed by Skanska and certified at the highest level of LEED. Firstly, Gröna Skrapan and its LEED certification process were studied and analysed. It was found that the prestige of being highly LEED-certified can make design team obsessively concerned with getting credits instead of focusing on these credits environmental value. Skanska seems to use LEED as a powerful tool of communication, but getting LEED certified in Sweden is not as much of a hassle as it is in the US for example. The main reason for certifying a building is the marketing value associated with a certificate, which influence the ability to sell a building or not. Which certification system is used does not matter however. The choice of LEED as a certification was questioned by comparing it to its biggest opponent in Europe, Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM). The study shows that BREEAM is a more accurate scheme to use in Sweden. A focus on the operational phase and use of the building – through an online survey addressed to Gröna Skrapan’s users – showed that several use-related issues exist. The Swedish construction industry needs to switch its focus back on actual efficient sustainable work: environmental certification schemes should be a tool, not a goal.
Keywords: Annan naturvetenskap;Other Natural Sciences
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: Chalmers tekniska högskola / Institutionen för energi och miljö
Chalmers University of Technology / Department of Energy and Environment
Series/Report no.: Report - Division of Environmental Systems Analysis, Chalmers University of Technology : 2014:19
Collection:Examensarbeten för masterexamen // Master Theses

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